Christmas on Nutcracker Court
Judy Duarte
Inspirational romance
Kensington Books
ISBN: 978-0-7582-3895-9
September 2011

Almost Christmas and Carly Westbrook was trying to keep a roof over their heads. Her ex-husband was non-existent in their lives. Her two boys were trying to help, but they really couldn’t understand the situati on. Her job as a hair stylist was steady but didn’t produce enough income to pay her bills. She prayed they wouldn’t be evicted before Christmas.

Close to her home on Bushman’s Trail was Nutcracker Court. Two single men lived beside each other with totally different lifestyles. Max Tolliver, divorced and quite bitter, worked all night and slept during the day as an author. A big grungy dog, Hemingway, had seemingly adopted him but kept getting out of the yard. Grant Barrows was a big businessman who now was almost broke and forced to find employment. There were sev eral other characters that played major roles in the book.

I had really mixed feelings about this book. It was hard for me to get involved with the story. There were a myriad of characters I couldn’t keep straight. I was confused and wasn’t sure I could get through the book. HOWEVER, about 1/3 into the book, it really clicked with me! I haven’t read this author before and had nothing with which to compare. When I reached the point of understanding, I just couldn’t put it down. Sounds strange, I’m sure.

After getting the many characters straight in my mind, it had a very interesting storyline. The inspirational plot was evident but not overpowering. There was a twist in the book that I definitely didn’t see coming. And there were several different surprises toward the ending. This definitely was not cookie-cutter. I plan to read other of her books. I recommend this book as a sweet pre-Christmas story which had a unique, feel-good ending.

Overall rating: 4hearts
Sensuality rating: Sweet
Reviewer: Brenda Talley